Harijan Bhala Teja Vs. State of Gujarat, on 27th April, 2013, Supreme Court of India: Case Brief – Read Judgement

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When manner in which the death is caused was to be proved by Accused, not proved, then he may be punished even in the absence of direct evidences
Civil Appeal No. 2031-2032 of 2015
Bench: Justice A. K. Sikri; Justice Prafulla C. Pant

Case Brief: In the present case, the bench was tabled with the appeals in which the judgement and order of the Gujarat High Court was challenged. The Trial court in this case acquitted the accused. However, the State of Gujarat which was feeling aggrieved by the said decision of the Trial court, moved to the High Court with appeal, in which the High Court of Gujarat after admitting the said appeal and thereafter re- examining the evidences on record found that the charges of offence punishable under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 is proved on record, and as such finally, the High Court convicted accused and thus, the High court sentenced him to imprisonment for Life and also asked to pay fine of 100 rupees under the said provision. The present bench seen that the concerned High Court did not awarded punishment under section 201 of the Code. Now, this bench after analysing the records in this case, found that the appellant here got hurriedly buried body of his wife before anyone from the parental (deceased’s) side could reach. The appellant was being the husband of the deceased wife claimed that his wife died during her delivery period. Moreover, the bench further observed that as per the section 106 of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872, if any fact is especially within the knowledge of any person, then burden for proving the same is upon such person.

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Thus, when it is proved from record that appellant was staying with his wife at the time of her death, then it is for him to show as to in what manner she died, especially, when the prosecution has successfully proved that she died homicidal death. Moreover, the bench, after analysing the evidences on record found that High Court was correct in its fixing that the charges against the appellant stood proved beyond all reasonable doubts, that he committed murder of his wife, and attempted to destroy the evidence by hurriedly getting buries the body. Also, this bench found that high court unnecessarily has emphasized on the point that there is no direct evidence to connect the accused with the crime, also bench sees that there is no possibility of direct evidence to be on the record. Thus, the conviction and sentence recorded by high Court not interfered with and appeals dismissed.

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Read the Judgement: Harijan Bhala Teja Vs. State of Gujarat

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